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Canada to consider sending military instructors to Ukraine - Ministry of Defense

Canada to consider sending military instructors to Ukraine - Ministry of Defense Photo: Canadian Defense Minister Bill Blair (
Author: Liliana Oleniak

Canada will consider sending military instructors to Ukraine if "certain conditions" are met. However, these conditions "do not yet exist," according to Canadian Defense Minister Bill Blair.

Any Canadian troops will be deployed only for "non-combat" functions.

The Defense Minister emphasizes that conditions in Ukraine need to "change" before Canadian troops can return to the country where they trained Ukrainian soldiers on the ground before the Russian invasion.

"Right now, circumstances are not appropriate for that training to take place in Ukraine, but we’re going to continue to train," Blair says.

Canada has trained over 40,000 Ukrainian soldiers as part of Operation Unifier, which began in 2015 after Russia's occupation of Crimea. However, after the Russian invasion, the Canadian military moved its training operations to the UK, Latvia, and Poland.

"We have had a number of discussions with Ukrainians that suggest when the conditions are right, we may be able to return," Blair says.

Leaving the possibility of returning to Ukraine open, Blair emphasizes that "the Canadian Armed Forces cannot have any combat role or what could be perceived as a combat role."

Macron's statement on sending NATO troops to Ukraine

French President Emmanuel Macron has not ruled out the possibility that NATO could send troops to help Ukraine. The main problem, he said, is that there is currently no consensus on this issue.

Some NATO countries have already opposed this idea, including Germany, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Spain, and Italy.

At the same time, some countries are ready to consider such a possibility, such as Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.

Canada, which is also a NATO member, has said it is ready to send troops to Ukraine, but only to train Ukrainian defenders in areas far from the front.